The Single Market Strategy for Goods and Services was adopted by the European Commission in October 2015. It is divided into three main pillars: (I.) Creating opportunities for consumers and businesses, (II). Encouraging modernisation and innovation and (III). Ensuring practical delivery. The EEA EFTA States have issued several EEA-EFTA Comments related to the strategy.
The strategy entails a number of proposal for legal acts that may be EEA relevant, including in the field of services, professional qualifications, company law, goods and intellectual property. In additional, several measures are of a non-legislative nature, including a Communication on the collaborative economy and a Joint Initiative on Standardization.
In the field of services the strategy has led to a proposal for a directive on a new notification procedure for national rules falling under the scope of the Services Directive, and proposals for a directive and a regulation establishing a European services e-card, to be based on the Internal Market Information System (IMI). EFTA organized a workshop on the e-card in May 2017.
The strategy has furthermore led to a proposal for a regulation aiming at reducing geo-blocking, a regulation on a Single Digital Gateway, an action plan to improve SOLVIT, and a proposal on a Single Market Information Tool (SMIT).
Legislation in the field of Services is covered by Part III, Chapter 3 EEA. The Services Directive and the Internal Market Information System (IMI) Regulation are incorporated into Annex X to the EEA Agreement. The EEA EFTA states also participates in SOLVIT, a Single Market problem solving mechanism for citizens and businesses. The EEA EFTA states participate in a number of expert groups related to these acts and Single Market tools.
The EFTA Working Group (WG) on Enterprise Policy and Internal market Affairs has the responsibility for maintaining an overview of the follow up of the Single Market Strategy and for following the actions falling under the scope of the Services Directive, geo-blocking, the Single Digital Gateway, SMIT and SOLVIT. The WG is also responsible for following the development of the IMI, and for each year handling the EEA EFTA States financial contribution to the European Commission’s internal market budget lines for DG GROW
The remaining initiatives under the strategies fall under the main responsibility of the EFTA WG on professional Qualifications, The WG on Intellectual Property, the WG on public procurement, the EFTA WG on Company Law, and the EFTA WG on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), while the EFTA TBT Committee is responsible for standardization. Several initiatives are followed by more than one WG.